LONDON — The campaign for Britain to leave the European Union has descended to the level of grotesque racial stereotyping with one of the main campaign groups promoting a disturbing video featuring the voice of Donald Trump.
Leave.EU, one of the big “Brexit” groups, posted the video on its official Facebook and Twitter channels. It includes footage of what purports to be violent refugees intercut with idyllic scenes of Western life. The soundtrack is Trump narrating lyrics from a song about a poisonous snake that bites and kills a woman who was foolish enough to take him into her home.
Trump has read the words to “The Snake,” and equated the deadly creature to refugees from war zones, at several rallies but he is thought to have nothing to do with the violent video, a longer version of which was published on YouTube in January with the words: ”Do not allow the Islamification currently happening in Europe to reach America. Act now before its too late.”
It’s unclear where most of the footage comes from but at least one scene shows a blond couple being attacked by a gang of black men in Missouri—the assailants are not believed to have been refugees seeking shelter in the Midwest despite the video’s insinuation that this is what asylum seekers look like.
Leave.EU, which is supported by UKIP leader Nigel Farage and bankrolled by the party’s main donor, posted the video on Twitter with the words: “Donald Trump’s take on immigration! Vote to leave the ‘vicious snake’ that is the EU on June 23rd! #LeaveEU”
Senior members of Britain’s main political parties called on Leave.EU to take down the video, which they described as “xenophobic.”
“Depicting whole nationalities negatively to a Donald Trump voice-over—a man whose immigration policy is to ‘build a wall’—is surely beneath us all,” said the letter signed by a Labour, a Liberal Democrat, and a Conservative Member of Parliament. “Border control and the economic implications of immigration are rightly central to this debate over Britain and Europe, but this early and ugly descent in to xenophobia must be stopped.”
Leave.EU lost out in a battle with the Vote Leave organization for designation as the official anti-EU group, but it remains one of the most vocal groups ahead of Britain’s referendum in June. When asked about the video on Tuesday, a Leave.EU spokesman denied that they had endorsed the video.